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Hamm encourages passing of graduated driver's license bill
 
BISMARCK, N.D.-Insurance Commissioner Adam Hamm today joined forces with the North Dakota Coalition for Graduated Drivers Licensing, including the North Dakota Highway Patrol, the North Dakota Department of Transportation, the North Dakota Department of Health and AAA North Dakota to support a bill aimed at reducing teen traffic accidents and deaths. 

The graduated driver's license (GDL) bill, which will be presented to the 62nd Legislative Assembly in 2011, recommends three phases of licensing for new drivers. North Dakota currently has only two phases-a learner's permit and a driver's license-and is the only state in the nation without a GDL system. The additional phase, intermediate, includes conditions on the number of passengers, cell phone use and nighttime recreational driving during the first few months of unsupervised driving. 

"Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of teen deaths in North Dakota," Hamm said. "This bill aims to reduce the three greatest risks for young drivers-inexperience, distractions and late night driving." 

Other speakers at today's press conferences included North Dakota State Representatives George Keiser and Ed Gruchalla, Col. James Prochniak, North Dakota Highway Patrol superintendent; Francis Ziegler, North Dakota Department of Transportation director; Dr. Terry Dwelle, North Dakota Department of Health state health officer; and Gene LaDoucer, AAA North Dakota director of public affairs. 

"Other states have seen as much as a 39 percent decrease in teen crashes after implementing graduated licensing concepts. By making a few simple, yet effective, changes to our licensing system, we stand to significantly reduce the number of car crashes on North Dakota roads," LaDoucer said. 

For more information, contact the Insurance Department at 1-800-247-0560 or insurance@nd.gov. 

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Click here to see the media packet.

North Dakota Insurance Department
600 E. Boulevard Ave.
Bismarck, ND 58505-0320
Phone 701.328.2440
Toll free 800.247.0560
Fax 701.328.4880

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